Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban has an idea for the in-season tournament

Dallas Mavericks, Mark Cuban
Dallas Mavericks, Mark Cuban / Christina Pahnke - sampics/GettyImages

Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban was against the in-season tournament in the past, but the owner has an open mind about the latest proposal, according to Marc Stein. The tournament would not happen until the 2023-2024 season, and commissioner Adam Silver has been pushing the idea for years. They are common in European soccer, and it gives teams a second prize to compete for every season.

Cuban noted to Stein that it could “build interest”. The NBA’s business is thriving, but they are always searching for ways to improve their product. The group stage games of the in-season tournament were proposed to be part of the 82-game schedule back in 2019, so fans can expect at least some of the in-season tournament contests will be part of the team's normal slate.

The Mavericks owner had a proposal of his own for the in-season tournament, which he shared with Marc Stein. Here is a look at what Cuban wants to do, and how it could impact the draft.

Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban has an idea for the in-season tournament

Cuban wants the league to expand the NBA Draft to four rounds with the winner of the in-season tournament grabbing the top selection in the two newly created rounds, according to Stein. The picks would not be tradeable in Cuban’s proposal, and Stein notes that expanding the draft would need to be collectively bargained with the players association.

With the increase in tanking across the league, this would give teams that are rebuilding another avenue to gain draft capital. It would also incentivize teams that are successful to compete hard in the in-season tournament for the additional picks. There is expected to be a cash prize for the players that should give them plenty of motivation.

Expanding the draft is an interesting idea, but its success is unproven. The hit rate on second-round picks is not high, so do teams desire two additional draft picks every year? It could improve the G League product, but that only works if teams are willing to increase the pay in the league. There is plenty of talent worldwide to make the G League an extremely competitive league, but players go overseas because they can make more money.

The in-season tournament will be part of the NBA schedule soon. It is not coming this year, but the tournament looks likely for the 2023-2024 season. Will they adopt Cuban’s idea? What are the specifics of the tournament? Those are yet to be decided, but fans should keep an eye out for the latest.

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